Some STIs (Sexually Transmitted Infections) are more prevalent among certain population groups than others. In some groups, sexuality is more difficult to discuss. For this reason, we are focussing specifically on cultural factors that mean that some people run a greater risk of contracting an STI than others.

Test advice

One out of seven people in - the Netherlands, who get tested has an STI. Did you know this percentage is higher among immigrants? Almost one out of four people from Suriname, the Netherlands Antilles or Aruba who get tested has an STI. HIV, the virus that breaks down a person's immune system and can cause AIDS, is found more than twice as often among first-generation immigrants than among native Dutch. Nearly half of all people with HIV, who are originally from Sub Saharan Africa and living in the Netherlands, do not know they have it.

This goes for all STIs: the sooner you get treatment, the better. Were you born abroad? Was one of your parents or were both your parents born in another country? Click for customised recommendations for testing.


Fortunately, if you are on time most STIs can be treated well. Some STIs like HIV, cannot be cured. A timely treatment start may enable you to live a long and healthy life with HIV. And by taking good care of yourself you decrease the risk of infecting others. Keep yourself and your loved ones healthy. Get tested! Get treated!

Talking about sex

Not everybody finds it easy to talk about topics such as STIs, sexuality and safer sex. In some cultures, it is more difficult to talk about sex or about the risk of STIs, STI testing and treatment. Shame and taboo prevent you from visiting your GP or an STI clinic. As a result, you may have an STI for longer. This is damaging to your health and leads to a greater spread of STIs.